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Explosion kills 16 in Afghan city of Kandahar

23 May 2018

The death toll in Tuesday's vehicle explosion attack in Kandahar has risen to 16, while 38 others were injured, according to media reports.

Previously, 1TF broadcaster reported, citing a source, that two people were killed and 25 more injured in an explosion that hit Afghanistan's second-largest city of Kandahar.

Authorities at Kandahar's Mirwais hospital said the dead and wounded included both civilians and members of the Afghan security forces.

As many as seven police were killed in clashes on Monday night between security forces and the Taliban in Ghazni province, southwest of Kabul, where the insurgents have cut a highway with the neighbouring province of Paktika, officials said.

Police and intelligence officers in the city of Kandahar had already cleared the area around a bus station where the van was found, said the provincial governor's spokesman Daud Ahmadi.

He added that there are at least five small children among those wounded.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the explosion.

Witnesses said fix crews were at the site, clearing large quantities of rubble and debris from the explosion. Among those killed, four were security forces personnel.

But the Taliban still control swathes of the country and are staging repeated attacks, while the Islamic State group has conducted a series of high-profile suicide blasts in Kabul and elsewhere.

The latest fighting coincided with a US government report that found few signs of progress this year, with fighting spreading and hundreds of casualties from militant attacks.

Explosion kills 16 in Afghan city of Kandahar